Women And Their Guitars – Patty Griffin by Michelle S.

SXSW is a huge annual event in Austin Texas and I’ve been going off and on for several years.  It’s a great opportunity to see amazing performances by artists that if you saw them on tour, it would still be great, but in Austin, especially during SXSW, magic happens, and you see special performances that you wouldn’t see anywhere else.  For me, it was seeing Patty Griffin live.  I was lucky to see her perform in 2004 at SXSW and it was such a great show!  It was a packed house, yet, her performance made it seem like a small intimate affair.  Nothing over the top, just her with a guitar, the band and all of us! The appreciative fans taking it all in.

I’ve been listening to her music since hearing her 1996 debut album Living With Ghosts, but the album that solidified me becoming a huge fan was the follow-up, Flaming Red.  I think what is so endearing about Patty Griffin, her songwriting and lyrics is that they are so engaging and comforting, like a close friend that always finds the right words to say when you need to hear them.  Yet, can also give you a nice reality slap especially when she throws in a hard guitar driven rock song to shake things up!

Her voice is a pure breath of fresh air that commands to be heard.  Her songs are very relatable at times, yet they can be a little off kilter which ends up making you scratch your head wondering hmmm…What does this mean?  But, realistically speaking, that’s what makes a great songwriter and storyteller. Stories (lyrics) that command attention and leave you to ponder.  Her music and lyrics kind of remind me of a female version of Tom Waits only with an angelic voice attached to them.  I love Tom Waits music so this isn’t meant to be said in a bad way but instead, a comparison, she’s a great songwriter that writes about everyday life, tragedies and love just like Waits.

She’s had her ups and downs in the music industry, and I myself can attest, that this is a tough industry to be in from my own personal experience with all the shake ups, label changes, and such but she’s still creating music, doing things her way and gaining new fans along the way.  So, kudos to her! If you watch the Netflix show, The Haunting of Hill House, you can hear her song “Heavenly Day” S1E The Bent-Neck Lady being played– One of my favorite’s!

Stay Tuned –  – Michelle S.

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